tv News Nation MSNBC September 14, 2015 8:00am-9:01am PDT
news. kentucky clerk kim davis is back at work this morning. however, she remains defiant. this was the scene just a couple of hours ago as davis returned to the rowan county clerk's office for the first time since she was jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses. she cited her religious objections to same-sex marriage while addressing the large gathered crowd, davis announced she will still refuse to authorize marriage licenses but will not stop her deputies from issuing them if they so choose. >> effective immediately, and until an accommodation is provided, by those with the authority to provide it, any marriage license issued by my office will not be issued or authorized by me. i want the whole world to know, be no mistake about it, that if my deputy clerks who do not have my authorization or the authority, they don't have my authority to issue any license
whatsoever. i love my deputy clerks and i hate that they have been caught in the middle. if any of them feels that they must issue an unauthorized license to avoid being thrown in jail, i understand their tough choice and i will take no action against them. >> that was just a short time ago. msn msnbc's is outside. courthouse. is there anything more they want to address there? >> reporter: expect them to address kim davis being back at work and how things are going. they said repeatedly last week that she would not violate her conscience. we also expect to hear more about their claims that those licenses issued since her arrest and today are not valid. they are the only exampcamp tha saying this. county attorney and the state governor both saying, yes, these
licenses are in fact valid. just a few minutes ago we had a same-sex couple go inside the county clerk's office to apply for their license. lgbt advocates kind of formed this human chain around them keeping them from protesters who shouted slurs at them as they walked inside to obtain those licenses. davis has said she will not interfere with her deputy clerks. she also continues to ask the legislature to make changes to the law to accommodate her religious beliefs. some lgbt advocates we talk to also point to the legislature as sharing blame in this ongoing situation. >> became glaringly obvious to everyone that our commonwealth of kentucky has not dealt with this effectively. instead of rushing to draft legislation to put it before the general assembly in january, they need to draft legislation that deals with being able to effectively handle their own travesties. >> they're trying to force something against her that is a
sin. that is exactly what i say. and we've got people coming here all the way from ohio, places like that. why don't they get their license up there? if they are still so strong about this. because they're just trying to make problems here. >> reporter: at least seven same-sex couples have obtained their marriage licenses since kim davis was arrested. now an eighth couple applying inside. peter, some of these couples have already tied the knot. others are waiting. they have 30 days from the date of issue to get married. >> we're also hearing about this billboard that went up in morehead that basically greeted kim davis as she returns. just to get it write, it reads -- dear kim davis, the fact that you can't sell your daughters for three goats and a cow means we have already redefined marriage. any better sense of who is behind this? >> reporter: yeah. that billboard was put up by an organization, a non-profit, called planting peace. they are focused on humanitarian
and environmental initiatives. total cost for a month to display that billboard was $500. a spokesperson for the organization said its intent is to expose how anti-lgbt advocates are selective in how they choose to defend traditional values as well as send a message to lgbt youth that they are loved. >> sarah dallof in morehead, kentucky. thank you. david moore and david ermil have been together for 17 years, affectionately known as "the davi davi davids" by their friends. they are part of a discrimination license against kim davis. they later obtained a license from kim davis' deputy clerk after she was jailed. david, first things first.
you're back there outside the rowan county clerk's office. this is obviously where everything went down. now that you see kim davis come out, address the crowds again, she's out of jail, she's back behind that desk, what's your reaction? what do you make of this? >> well, i'm surprised that now she's allowing her deputy clerks to do the job that they could have done two months ago when everyone went in to begin with. why didn't she allow them to do it then? if this is really about religious liberty, it is about her standing for her rights, why isn't she standing up now and saying no? at the beginning she said i can't allow this to happen so she's allowing it to happen now. she could have allowed it then. it is just purely discrimination is what it's about. >> i want to get a better understanding of your position in all of this. you and your partner are not yet married. you still have to have it officiated, then brought back to be filed at the clerk's office. you just have the license so far which is effectively just a piece of paper. are you worried that that process may not be able to be
completed easily? >> well, of course, because she's continuing to say she's going to interfere with the law and not uphold the law so we don't really know what's going to happen when we go back. i've seen the certificate that has been stamped on other -- the other couples' licenses that have gotten it. it does have her name on it. if she tries to have that removed, i don't know what that will do with the validity of the license. you flow, i'm not completely worried about it. i think that the federal judge is backing us up. the governor's backing us up and the attorney's backing us up. it is kind of up to her around the liberty council to really prove that those are invalid at this point. >> i want to get into your head and your heart about the way that you and your partner, david, are feeling right now. in a recent interview, you said how am i supposed to walk down the aisle and stand at an altar without feeling some kind of hurt. you say it is never going to be a good memory. the entire experience is a tainted thing now. even when we have our ceremony, people are going to ask us about it. they're going to say kim davis'
name. can you just describe what this period of time has been like for you, as we still hear the protesters and the chants behind you, the impact it's had on your own life? >> it's a circus and it doesn't feel good. i mean this is what she's brought to our community. i'm unhappy for what's going to happen as far as our wedding goes and if protesters show up at that. we have to think about that and plan for that. >> when do you plan to get married? >> we're thinking halloween. yeah. >> nothing says romance like halloween. right? david, we appreciate it very much. congratulations to both of you. i appreciate your time today. >> thank you. we turn to some politics now. those surprising new numbers in the presidential race. hillary clinton now trailing senator bernie sanders by substantial margins in two critical battlegrounds. first, new hampshire.
sanders now with a 22-point lead over the former secretary of state, while in iowa sanders has jumped to a ten-point lead in the state where clinton will campaign this afternoon. this is an online survey but it still is significant figures there. there's also some troubling news for clinton in a new national poll. her lead over senator sanders is now 18 points, down from 49 points. 49 points in just july. vice president biden has surged two 21% even though he's yet to throw his name into this race. meantime, there is a possible new timetable for vice president biden to decide whether to jump in to the race. bloomberg news is reporting that there is a scenario where he could wait until late october, or early november. that would be after the first democratic debate which is october 13th and after hillary clinton testifies before congress on benghazi. it would also be right before the first state has its deadline for filing. there are also some new
questions today concerning hillary clinton's e-mail controversy, specifically whether tens of thousands of her e-mails that were deleted could be recovered. "the washington post" recovers the tech company that set up clinton's e-mail server has no knowledge of it being "wiped." clinton's campaign has not commented. on the republican side, just two days until the second republican debate, and while donald trump continues to lead the gop field, it is not all good news for the republican front-runner. in new hampshire he now has a massive lead. look at this. this is an online survey but it shows trump at 28 points above his closest rival, ben carson. in iowa though, a different story. trump's lead there just four points. that as he continues to attack his number one rival. >> i'll make great deals for this country. ben can't do that. ben's a doctor and he's not a dealmaker. >> my life is multi-faceted. growing up, having multiple
jobs, experiencing every level, socioeconomic level in our country. spending multiple years in corporate america. it's ridiculous to think that the only thing that i can do is neurosurgery. >> let's bring in our "news nation" political panel today. senior politics editor for the daily beast, jackie kucinich. republican strategist john fieri. the latest national poll shows trump at 33%. dr. ben carson at 20%. rest of the field not even close. frustrating for most of the establishment, jeb bush is at 8% and scott walker dropping down to 2% there. as we saw the firms casualty for the republicans, rick perry. he dropped out. trump may not be bulletproof but he obviously shattered the so-called ceiling. if you're advising his opponents going into wednesday night how do you combat that? >> that's the big question. the fascinating thing about donald trump is he's his own rapid response guy. he does rapid response to anyone
who attacks him and he goes right at them. like this whole thing with ben carson. he just calls him right how he sees it. i think in many ways that's very refreshing but in other ways it is going to catch up to him. i think for donald trump this debate is really important because he's somebody who can just say anything at any time and that volatility could undermine his credibility with voters, let's hope. >> jackie, talk about another big name as we anticipate this showdown. trump versus fiorina is something a lot of people will be watching for. the super pac supporting her campaign has a new ad this morning that further responds to donald trump's criticism going after her looks last week. take a look and i'll get your sense. >> this is the face of a 61-year-old woman. i am proud of every year and every wrinkle. >> so over the weekend the former hewlett-packard ceo -- by the way on home turf back in california -- called donald trump an entertainer, calling
herself a leader. a lot of praise for the way she handled her happy hour debate last time around. what does she need to do here as more and more people look at her among those outsiders, trump, carson and fiorina is the name that really deserves a lot of new attention. >> you know, she's someone who a lot of people don't know yet. so carly fiorina into edz to so -- needs to introduce herself to the main public, to everyone who's watching the main event that night. she can go after trump. some of the things trump said about her are completely inappropriate and should be addressed face to face, pardon the pun. but there is a danger of these candidates who trump has been battling with. just spending their time going at trump and not really getting a chance to talk substance, to talk about what they would do to run for president. then the candidates who trump hasn't gone after, they have a real opportunity if that does happen. if you have this melee on one end to get their message out. there are a lot of moving parts in this debate but certainly this is is a big moment for
carly fiorina. her first major debate on that main stage. >> it is not just the other koents that donald trump has gone off. he's gone after a man that will be one of the moderators, hugh hewitt referring to some of his questions as gotcha questions during that conversation they had where trump failed to sort of find the difference between the qods force and the kurds which was concerning to a lot of people who pay attention to this stuff right now. hewitt himself said there will be no potential conflict. here he was on "morning joe." >> we spent some time yesterday walking through question sets with dana and jake. i think we're very well prepared and it is all about the candidates, not about the panelists. >> it's about the candidates, not about the panelists. but trump sort of made it about everybody but himself. hasn't he? if you're the other guys, you got to come up with that one liner that steals the show. don't you? >> i think right now what you got to be is seen energetic.
i think that's the big problem with jeb bush. he's been tagged with this lo low-energy thing. john kasich has to show credibility. same with marco rubio. it is hard in the 15 to 30 seconds you respond. >> the first time around he sort of presented himself as a more compassion at type public leader. >> a man of substance who's gotten things accomplished. but donald trump believes the best defense is a good offense. it is awfully hard to combat that unless you have your own good offense in the way you respond. >> mostly the new report today about joe biden and the potential that he could wait until late october or even early november to announce, i know that would be in time to get his name on all the states' ballots but when you're vice president, you can't just pay southwest airlines for a flight. it's expensive. you got to pay for air force two
to shuttle you around. is that a period of time that he can afford to wait? >> it's not only that, it's the ground game. right now until joe biden -- you see some organization, really start forming in these early states, it makes me skeptical that he could wait that long. yes, he has name recognition. a lot of people know who joe biden is. he doesn't have to worry about that piece of it. but when you talk about iowa, about new hampshire, you have to have people on the ground working for are you. particularly in iowa where you need someone to stand in line at an elementary school all night during the caucuses. there are a lot more things than just fund-raising that joe biden will have to worry about. can he wait that long? sure, he can do whatever he wants. whether that's going to be viable is really a question. >> john, your take. >> my take is this. it is all about the e-mails. this revelation that the server might not have been swiped is either the best thing for hillary or the worst thing. we aren't quite sure yet because
we aren't quite sure what's in those e-mails. i think for joe biden, if it's a binary choice between him and bernie sanders, he can wait pretty long. if it is a choice between him, bernie sanders and hillary clinton, he's got to get in so he can compete against hillary's big machine. if hillary has a big meltdown and it is only between joe and bernie, then biden's got some time. >> then the party may come calling. nice to see you both, appreciate your time. breaking news right now. a kentucky state trooper shot and killed after a chase. an all-night manhunt we have learned is over. we are live with the late details when we come back. also, a dangerous situation in california. firefighters there struggling to contain an explosive wildfire that has already destroyed hundreds of homes north of napa forcing some people to evacuate so fast they barely had enough time to get their shoes on. we're live with an update next. more "sit" per roll. bounty is two times more absorbent.
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we're back. developing now, firefighters in california are struggling to contain a series of fast-moving fires that have already reduced one napa valley town to ashes. hundreds of homes there have been destroyed and at least one person has been killed. the most devastating wildfire began on saturday afternoon. it happened near the town of middletown. if you don't know that area, just north of napa. within just 24 hours the blaze grew from 50 acres to 50,000 acres. forcing thousands of evacuations in neighboring towns. a lot of residents really only had minutes to leave their homes. this is some video shot by one man as he was evacuating along a state highway lined with trees and cars still in flames. another shaken resident described what he saw as he raced away to safety.
>> you can hear the propane tanks blowing. see the flames shooting up. see the houses going up. looking up to powder horn, you can see that going up. >> could you see anything as you were driving out? >> just flames. smoke and flames. >> the valley fire is only 5% contained this morning. one california fire official says this is one of the worst wildfires he has seen in terms of its devastation. my colleague, nbc's jinah kim, is in middletown, california right now where thousands of people have been displaced. give us a sense right now, is there a new urgency or is there some sense at least that there aren't homes right now that are i guess potentially under attack? >> reporter: well, peter, we just spoke with a fire official who said the borders on this fire are so uncontrolled right now. i mean 5% containment in an 80-square mile area. that is pretty low.
he said it is going east, south and west right now and he is just really nervous about which of those fingers of fire will erupt at any moment. and the bad news today is that we are expected to get 20 to 30-mile-an-hour winds later on this afternoon. the temperatures are lower than they have been over the weekend so that is a little bit of good news. but we had 20 to 30-mile-an-hour winds on saturday when this fire really took off. so people are quite nervous about what today holds. now let me tell you where i am. this is 1 of 2 apartment complexes that just completely turned to ash over the weekend. as you said, 50,000 acres in just 12 hours. many of the homes, the neighborhoods in this area look just like this. it's quite eerie and lots of smoke. very difficult to breathe. as you said, as of about an hour ago, it still is at 61,000 acres and more than 400 homes and
businesses destroyed. the fire official said that he very much expects that number to go up because as we have the light of day now, people are going to be going up into the hills trying to find out what was saved, what was destroyed. so all these numbers that we're talking about, peter, could go up very much over the next few hours. >> fires can be fickle. sometimes homes get burned and others survive but here is doesn't seem like there is very much that made it. jinah kim, thank you very much. we appreciate your reporting today. coming up next right now, we're following breaking news. the manhunt is over for the suspect police say killed a kentucky state trooper. we're going to give you those late details. also -- >> you were looking for something. you were looking for attention. >> yes. their attention made me feel good. >> joyce mitchell, the prison seamstress who helped two inmates escape a new york prison, reveals why she did it. an exclusive interview with matt lauer. coming up, we'll speak live to a former inmate who worked with
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we're back now with breaking news. we have just learned that the man suspected of killing a kentucky state police trooper last night has been shot and killed by authorities trying to catch him. trooper joseph cameron ponder died last night when the driver opened fire after taking police on a nine-mile chase after a traffic stop. the suspect, joseph thomas johnson shanks, was found in a wooded area this morning. police say he was armed. nbc's kevin tibbles is live in chicago for us. kevin, give us a better sense of what more we know right now. >> reporter: hey, peter. well, this all transpired after a traffic stop in which shanks was pulled over by trooper ponder. when the trooper approached the car, apparently, according to
authorities, shanks floored it and made his way away. a police chase ensued that went on for about nine minutes. and when the trooper eventually got closer to the car, that's when shanks, it is alleged, started shooting at the trooper and the trooper was actually hit and killed inside his car. there were other people in shanks' automobile at the time at a press conference that just finished a few minutes ago. they say -- the police say that those people are not in custody at this time but that shanks made his way into a nearby wooded area. they searched for him, they waited. and when the sun started to come up, that is when this second shoot-out occurred and shanks eventually was killed by troopers down there in kentucky. >> resolution after an awful night for so many people in that community, kevin tibbles in chicago, thank you very much. still ahead -- a sweeping
report recommends a major overhaul in the town of ferguson, missouri after the police shooting of michael brown last year. it is one of the stories that we're updating around "news nation." in today's "first read," the second republican presidential debate just two days away. what's changed since the first time they went at it? and why our political team says the candidates may have to start ramping up the negative ads. also we're also breaking news just a short time ago. hungary shut down its border with syria turning away migrant whose have been coming in. this is the newest video of police shoring up that fence. we have those late details when we come back. you're watching "news nation." . ...so you may... take an omega-3 supplement... ...but it's the ingredients inside that really matter for heart health. new bayer pro ultra omega-3 has two times the concentration of epa and dha as the leading omega-3 supplement. new bayer pro ultra omega-3.
those migrants. we're joint now on the phone by nbc's richard engel who's on the serbian side of the hungary/serbian border right now. give us a sense of what you are experiencing and most importantly what the migrants there are up against as they try to move toward europe. >> reporter: this came somewhat unexpectedly. we thought that hungary would close its border in about six hours from now. but just a short while ago, perhaps one hour ago, hungarian police stood in rows. they moved up to the border. they fanned out. and they physically blocked the main crossing. it is the now-famous image that train tracks from serbia where people have been flowing daily by the thousands into hungary. now that train tracks is blocked off by riot police. they are telling migrants who are still arriving to go to
another entry point and we just walked about a mile with the migrants to that other entry point, walking a mile sort of through the fields along the barbed wire fence. at this second entry point, a similar scene. also lines of riot police holding their helmets, holding batons, and keeping the border very closed. people here are confused. they are hae nnot sure if they' going to be allowed in today, tomorrow, or never. >> richard, the border, as i understand it, is like 110 miles between hungary and serbia. this razor-wire fence clearly can't cover that distance. how big is this fence and ultimately what will happen to these migrants? what do they now do? >> reporter: the razor wire fence is supposed to cover that entire 109 mile-border. there are still a few sections that are not complete but we are
watching today as crews down here are finishing it, driving the poles into the ground, rolling out the fencing. the intention is to have that complete by midnight tonight. but even before it is complete, the police have filled in the gaps and are using their manpower to create a human fence. what happens to these migrants and refugees and the tens of thousands who are behind them is very much the open question right now because it is not just hungary that is doing this. hungary is doing it. there are increased checks in serbia. there are increased checks in macedonia. there are increased checks and restrictions in austria and in germany. so think of this as a river and hungary has put up a major dam. but other countries are starting to dam the flow as well. >> at some point the dam just either breaks or these folks have to go further and further
north or south and try to find their way around. >> reporter: or east or west. >> absolutely. richard, we appreciate it very much. thank you. a programming notoriety now. lester holt will have much more on the unfolding crisis. he is anchoring nbc news "nightly news" live from hungary tonight. if you're interested in helping -- a lot of people have reached out to us asking how they can do something to help those refugees and migrants in this crisis, we've compiled a list of organizations accepting donations for the crisis. it is at newsnation.msnbc.com. coming up still -- no word from vice president joe biden on whether he'll run for the white house. in today's first read, is time running out for him? plus -- >> on behalf of today's organization, i want to apologize. >> decades after vanessa williams was forced to resign as miss america, she gets an apology. it is one of the stories we're updating around the "news nation."
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we're back now with your first read on politics this morning. just two days to go until the first gop debate. we are taking a look at how much has changed since the last time these candidates faced off and really what it means for the front-runners still at center stage. that's donald trump. you may have heard of him. the democratic side, hillary clinton's slide in the polls opening up a big window for joe biden. but is time running out for the vice president? joining us now, nbc news senior political editor mark murray. mark, nice to see you. let's break this down quickly. a lot has changed since last time all these folks gathered on one stage. they're going to do it again on wednesday. what's notable is they're not going to do it again until almost halloween. this one will stick for a while. one of the biggest things that changed the dynamic heading into wednesday's debate? >> first you have to look at donald trump, he's solidified himself as the republican front-runner heading into that first debate, peter, last
august. he was leading in some polls but he was a shaky lead. and also he was facing a tremendous amount of criticism. now there's almost this perception that he's bulletproof, at least for now, when it comes to the criticism. that's been a big change. the other change is seeing how ben carson has surged from almost an afterthought to almost a solid second place. after the first debate, we thought, gosh, the guy was too quiet. that quiet surge is making a difference. >> he's had very little campaign activity since then but he is now the number two person. we have to pay attention to carly fiorina. she's now in this debate. cnn has 11 instead of 10. her poll numbers have gone up. not to the level we've seen for ben carson and donald trump butter in where she's now a major player heading into this debate. >> as striking not just who's doing well but who's doing poorly. jeb bush continues to fall. scott walker has almost disappeared. >> going into that first debate, jeb bush even though he wasn't leading in all the national policy was still viewed as the
most likely republican front-runner. he still might very well end up winning the republican nomination but that path is a lot trickier than it used to be. scott walker is probably the biggest political story outside of hillary clinton. he's gone from the unquestioned iowa front-runner to someone in tenth place now in iowa. >> in iowa. that's where he had to sort of plant his flag and say this is my state. >> again, as much has changed since that first debate, i think so much is going to change after this one on wednesday night. >> one thing that continues to keep changing, i guess, is the assessments of whether joe biden is in or whether he is out. after colbert, a lot of people said you can't say things like that, then just get into the race a couple days later. there's some reporting from bloomberg that suggests that the timetable could be as late as late october maybe, early november. as you and i know well, that would be after the first democratic debate. it could be before you are able to get your name -- the deadline to get your name on all the states' ballots. does that appear at a time though that a sitting vice president can afford to wait? >> two things to keep in mind.
the limits on what somebody can do just to get into the democratic race. you're right, if you want to get in the first democratic debate you have to announce before october 13th. if you want to get on the filing, the ballot filing deadlines for some of those early states, it's early november. those are what any functional candidate for president would need to do. but then there is a question of what does a winning candidate do? and do you start raising -- what will end up having to be a $1 billion endeavor for a democrat to withstand all the slings and arrows that are coming your way as a general election nominee. barack obama 2012 had to build a $1 billion campaign. hillary clinton is already building -- trying to get to that level. bernie sanders has a lot of money. joe biden wants to get in and compete against hillary clinton and bernie sanders, if he does, he has to get in now and start raising that money. >> you talk about bernie sanders. right now he's speaking at liberty university in lynchburg, virginia right now. there's a live picture. this is sort of a remarkable
seen. okay? you have this democratic insurgent speaking on the jewish holy day at the evangelical college in the state of virginia. there's a whole lot of faith going on there right now. but what does this say about his willingness to kind of go anywhere? >> it's been very remarkable, bernie sanders. chuck todd on "meet the press" yesterday made a very good point that if we weren't talking about trump, bernie sanders would probably be the biggest story of this campaign so far. but again, bernie sanders' biggest challenge is still sustaining that. we are still in the august-september point. we've seen so many people end up having momentum at this stage. can you carry it into december, january and february and that's going to be his biggest challenge not to follow the same path we saw howard dean, bill bradley, that kind of insurgent campaign that eventually just didn't have the juice. >> nice to see you, we appreciate it. i'll talk to you along the way. i'll pick your brain before i head out west to cover this debate. the timing of vice president biden's entry into the 2016 race is the focus of today's "news
nation" gut collection as we discuss, sources say a decision may not come until late october, even early november. if that is true biden would miss the first democratic debate. that's october 13th. that time line would also limit his fund-raising ability. but on the flip side, he'd have more time to put together a viable campaign perhaps and to make sure his family is fully behind the decision. let's just break this down. let's cut to it. what does your gut tell you? do you think joe biden still has a chance at getting the nomination if he waits until late october or early november to make a decision? go to newsnation.msnbc.com and let us know your vote. new video just in to msnbc. the first same-sex couple to get their license in rowan county, kentucky just ploemmoments ago. the first time since clerk kim davis returned to work. the couple obtained it from one of davis' deputies. look at all the cameras there. the deputies have continued to issue licenses to same-sex
couples despite her refusal. davis announced earlier she will still refuse to authorize licenses for same-sex couples but will not stop her deputies from being the ones who issue them. still ahead -- you got to see this. joyce mitchell tearfully explaining that she was only trying to save her family when she helped two violent prison inmates escape. more of this remarkable exclusive interview with matt lauer. also a former inmate who worked closely with her at the tailor shop in that prison tells me what he saw during his time there. it's all next on "news nation."
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this morning we are hearing for the first time from the woman who pleaded guilty to helping two inmates escape from an upstate new york prison. this brazen escape of course captured everybody's attention over the summer. joyce mitchell, who worked in the tailor shop at clinton correctional facility, became a key part of the investigation after it was revealed that she
helped david sweat and richard matt obtain tools, the tools they used in this elaborate plot. that will happen later this month. but she sat down with nbc's matt lauer to discuss her relationship with matt and sweat and while she helped them. we should warn you that part of this conversation is graphic. >> at the time that everything happened, i was going through a time where i -- i didn't feel like my husband loved me anymore and i guess it was just me, i was going through depression and i guess they saw my weakness. >> these are two guys who committed heinous crimes. >> yes. >> and these are the guys you allowed yourself to have a friendship with. >> yes. everybody tells me i'm way too nice. >> when did they start asking you for favors?
>> a few months before they decided to get out, they were asking me for things. >> so what did you bring them? >> i would bring cookies, brownies, you know, stuff like that. >> pretending that you were bringing them in for yourself? >> yes. >> how often did you do that, joyce? >> i did it a lot. >> speculation has run rampant, joyce, that while mr. matt told you he loved you, that by this point, you loved him as well. >> no. it was -- it started out as a flirtation thing, but that's all it ever was. there was never any love between myself and mr. matt. >> at some point, in addition to bringing food and now starting to bring the tools they would eventually use to break out of prison, there was sexual contact between you and richard matt.
when i said no, he grabbed my head and pushed me down. >> so just to be clear, at no point in this relationship was richard matt, was there any in your opinion consensual sexual contact between you two? >> there was never any consensual. >> and then there was david sweat. there were questions raised as far back as 2013 about whether joyce mitchell and sweat had an inappropriate relationship. >> so there was no sexual contact between you and david sweat in 2013. >> there was never any sexual contact between us. whatsoever. >> joining me is eric jenson, former inmate at clinton correctional facility. he also worked inside that tailor shop at the prison where joyce mitchell worked as the seamstress overseeing inmates. nice to visit with you right now. i appreciate your time very much. thank you. we should also note you served time i think it was for you were
convicted, what was it in the past, your past conviction? >> i was convicted for possession of stolen property in the fourth degree, a class a felony. >> let me ask you if i can about your experience while you were behind bars. what did you witness as far as interactions between joyce mitchell and david sweat? did you ever see any of these transactions where he, she brought him things? >> oh, yeah. seen it a bunch of times. she used to bring him in food all the time. he would stay back from the mess hall when we would all leave and we would come back and he would be eating barbecued chicken, ribs, big cheeseburgers, things like that that you can't get inside the facility. >> as for richard matt specifically and his relationship and you just heard a lot of that conversation that joyce mitchell with our colleague matt lauer right now, you said of richard matt that he was a maniac. you said that it was always a joke that she was basically his girlfriend, she would bring him in food, tattoo supplies, et cetera. so why did anybody speak -- why didn't this ever come out? >> from an inmate perspective,
if you speak out, you will be labeled a snitch. but i do believe in 2013, after i left the facility, that word did get leaked out and immediately, mr. sweat was moved from that tailor shop. an investigation was conducted but there was no supporting evidence so they just moved him to a different tailor shop and left him there. joyce stayed in the other tailor shop. >> having just seen that conversation, what was your impression, joyce mitchell describes herself as being too nice. is that the impression you had of her? do you buy what she's saying? >> she was too nice. she was really gullible. she always looked like she enjoyed the attention that everybody gave her, whether it was just a simple conversation or giving her compliments and you know, doing things with her in the tailor shop like david and rich did. i don't believe that, because she could have told at any point, she could have told an officer what was going on and immediately, richard matt would have been removed from that
tailor shop. no ifs, ands or buts about it. >> our time with you is limited but your perspective is critical as we time to learn more. nice to visit with you. that does it for this edition of "news nation." up next, "andrea mitchell reports." best cracked pepper sa. most ribs eaten while calf roping... yep, greatness deserves recognition. you got any trophies, cowboy? ♪ whoomp there it is uh, yeah... well, uh, well there's this one. best insurance mobile app? yeah, two years in a row. well i'll be... does that thing just follow you around? like a little puppy! the award-winning geico app. download it today.
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right now on "andrea mitchell reports," out of control. one person dies, hundreds of homes destroyed as the valley fire rages through 61,000 acres near sacramento. >> there comes a point when there's nothing you can do. >> we don't know what to expect at this point. >> we can't get a break. it's one thing after another. >> legal challenge. kim davis will not stop her deputies from issuing same sex marriage licenses. but she plans challenges down the road. >> any marriage license issued by my office will not be issued or authorized by me.
i want the whole world to know, be no mistake about it that if my deputy clerks, they don't have my authority to issue any license whatsoever. and closing the gates. germany prepares to limit the flow of migrants as the barbed wire fence goes up in hungary. lester holt is reporting on this human tragedy. >> this child has just been brought across the border. she couldn't walk on her own. she looks flushed and dehydrated. and right now, no one can seem to find her mother or any of her family. good day. i'm andrea mitchell in washington. in northern california, firefighters are losing ground to the most explosive and destructive wildfire of the season. so far, 10,000 people have had to evacuate. many with only minutes